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tape makes a thread, probably [nsfw] and [nsf56k] eventually

tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush RangerSocial Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
oh whoops I said I was going to do a thing and ha, here we go

hey all. I've been here for a million years and I've just always felt kind of completely inferior a lot because impostor syndrome is a lifestyle choice.

So I'm a thirtysomething sculptor who has aspirations toward more 2-dimensional illustration.
I'm not classically trained or college educated in anything, though I've always "been an artist" and I've taken sculpture courses with Jordu Schell, Helder Moreira, and Wendy Froud, among others.

I attend life-drawing sessions semi-frequently but not regularly in the time since I got my most recent job, and I do some cartooning type stuff to blow off steam but I'd be hard pressed to call any of it good or anything.

I'm working on doing more work on my drafting and painting skills. I feel confident in my figure work and I'm committing to myself to make myself do more and work harder. I really want to put some emphasis on actually finishing things that I start in the coming year. Creating illustrations that I feel safe and comfortable saying are "completed" is a thing I struggle with greatly, I think that's something I could use help getting through in the "finished, not perfect" kind of way. If everything stays a study or a doodle or a sketch I never have to commit to finishing it, right?

In terms of mediums, I work heavily in pencil, watercolor, ink, and gouache for my drawn work.
Sculpture is kind of all over the place: wax, clay, polymer clay, and other hybrid mediums for mold-making and casting applications. I've been working in polymer clay for over 20 years at this point. o.O

I'm working to incorporate more media in my drawing and illustration and getting more confident in doing studies and other practical, necessary, if repetitive, work. I don't iterate on things evenly, and I really should spend more time at the earlier stages of a project, I think.

I feel like I'm really terrible at depicting light and shade, especially in terms of color. I think part of this is because I've spent so much of my art focus on sculpture that I have trouble defining light forms because I'm very accustomed to having them be defined by the volumes of the sculpture, if that makes sense? One of my art teachers tried to explain this to me in high school, that this was why I had so much trouble translating, and it's really only been the past couple of years that I've understood what she was trying to say when she would say, "of course you're having trouble seeing where this form goes on the page, you're a sculptor." she wouldn't say it *exactly* that directly, but that's what I'm seeing now when I try to translate light and shadow.

It's definitely something that I want to work on but that I'm also sort of stylistically resistant to. I really like limited palette work and feel a lot more confident there and I'm not sure if that's a style thing or if it's just resistance to learning light and color. so I'm going to try a few things and see how it all works, I guess.

I'll try to post some recent stuff, I need to go through and actually photograph some of my sculpts and recent drawings at a higher quality than just "lol instagram"

tl; dr: hi! going to give this a shot! soon.

m3naceNo-QuarterRobertjones

Posts

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    We technically have a no threads without art in them rule, so put something old up just to give this thread a starting point

    Really excited to see what you do this year!

  • m3nacem3nace Registered User regular
    edited January 4
    Huh, I was speaking to a friend about this after trying painting in VR, whether or not someone with a background in sculpting would have as firm a grasp on volumetric drawing as an illustrator would have on, well, sculpting. Intradesting.
    Cus I certainly think of volumetric drawing as a form of sculpting, but I guess building up those drawing skills really does allow you to spin a 3D sculpture in your head so you don't actually need the "sculpture" to be there when drawing it.
    But yea lets see you walk the walk dude!

    m3nace on
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited January 5
    oh I completely forgot that rule exists, and yet it was one of the specific reasons I put off doing this for like a million years

    ha

    Uh, here, have some life drawing

    3fcf449f-5727-45c7-bd23-2660905891c0.jpg

    2016-12-16%2022.28.11.jpg

    2016-12-16%2023.08.34.jpg

    2016-12-16%2023.48.35.jpg


    also apologies in advance that I'm literally the worst about having and using a scanner but I really do need to get into the habit of doing that (more of that "finalizing art" that I'm really bad about, as per the resolutions thread!)

    tapeslinger on
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    m3nace wrote: »
    Huh, I was speaking to a friend about this after trying painting in VR, whether or not someone with a background in sculpting would have as firm a grasp on volumetric drawing as an illustrator would have on, well, sculpting. Intradesting.
    Cus I certainly think of volumetric drawing as a form of sculpting, but I guess building up those drawing skills really does allow you to spin a 3D sculpture in your head so you don't actually need the "sculpture" to be there when drawing it.
    But yea lets see you walk the walk dude!

    it's so hilarious to me that I can do reasonably realistic portraiture in clay, but it's SO hard for me to interpret light and color in painting that it like forces me to go other ways to get what I want, visually.

    I definitely did not make great choices when I did have access to some classes and things, in terms of learning to draw volume and so on, so I am going to do the whole draw-an-egg self-assessment at some juncture. I made myself a whole set of shapes to work from, I've just not pushed myself to do anything with them yet, heh.

    I'm positive I'm not colorblind, if anything I am magnetized by color... BUT I do definitely have that aesthetic phenomena where certain colors in concert TOTALLY rankle me? Like I literally can't play Minecraft because it's just entirely too fugly a color scheme and I just don't feel like spending the time to mod it. So I do think there's something there that I allow to block me that I shouldn't.


  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    oh hey I actually have a couple of things! They are still more like doodles than finished work, and I'm still having trouble making myself finish my damn things, but hey. Progress. I was going to scan in some life drawing stuff and just looking at the scanner burned out any desire to do that so maybe another time, but I'm definitely starting to see things that look like progress.


    the endless goldilocksing about watercolor paper produces a lot of smaller pieces like this, and even though I re-discovered I really super don't like cotton rag paper, I actually really like how this piece turned out. Even in super cool space school, your picture day portrait is dorky as hell, it turns out

    2017-01-14%2017.08.57.jpg

    (I don't like cotton rag paper because I like working with the Inktense pencils which don't distribute pigment in the same way as a regular watercolor pencil or pan/tube color.) just two colors plus some marker inking: Red Oxide and Payne's Grey.

    I'm having some sudden but specific style changes and this seems to be one of them, I'm hopeful that it is a net positive.

    On the other side of the table: I have discovered the ArtRage mobile app and for my style of work it blows Sketchbook Pro out of the water.

    This is my first stab at digital art in literal years so I'm pretty happy with it:

    IMG_20170206_185007_522.jpg

    and by "happy with it" I mean "I am forcing myself to move on so that this isn't the only damn thing I ever work on again"


    I'm reading a lot of other people's comics again, which is nice because it's sort of reassuring to see how hokey it is to start your own thing and actually follow through with it, and I'm starting to feel good about this stuff again, so, yay, I guess? I'm having some doubts about the story I wanted to do at the beginning of the year and I'm spending a lot of time on novel stuff for the book I'm working on and dear lord do I not really want to do that entire book as a comic. (at least not until it can be an "adaptation" of an existing novel.)

    So I think I need to come up with a separate executable project in that department, maybe a fairytale or a folktale or something? shruuuuug.


    I'm going to try to work on improving my base composition skills also as part of the buildup toward doing more comics work. I am terrible at arranging scenic information, so one of my other friends suggested doing some studies from cinematic stills, to minimize the amount of "arranging" I'd need to do on my own while still kind of meaningfully developing an idea of how to arrange information in a composition so that it "reads" while still being interesting instead of my classic "void of space" backgrounds.

  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    actually finished something I've been working on for a while, some funsies fan art

    ktidaekaviit.jpg

    I need to get better at composing things that aren't just portraits, it's a habit

    (I'm granting myself clemency on this one because I started it months ago and just this weekend had enough energy to make myself actually finish it.)

    I stuck with my base palette of red oxide, payne's grey, and raw umber in watercolor and ink-pencil forms, and then went in and accented with white gouache, white Prismacolor pencil and white ink-pencil. it's neat to see how intensity and value between the red oxide and the payne's grey can really push a wide appearance of color variation. Still need to work on light sources and so on but, that's a constant battle, isn't it...

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    I keep meaning to post in here.

    So like, other than occasional life drawing, what are you doing/referencing to try and improve? It's hard to see much forward progress in a vacuum, are you checking out books, videos, schoolism, anything like that?

    I think that sometimes trying to improve your stuff with absolutely zero outside direction can be pretty frustrating, and sometimes watching someone do-a-thing is the leap your brain needs. I find that I sometimes understand a concept in theory but dont actually make a physical connection to my work untill I can just watch someone paint like I'm trying to.

    tapeslinger
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    That's a good question!

    I'm definitely trying to find some resources to help me expand and also refine the kind of work that I'm interested in doing. I am currently poring over Gurney's Color and Light and some of his blogs and videos and stuff. I'm also going through and watching videos from other artists I admire and looking for ways to use things they're doing, even when I'm not necessarily doing something similar. I've been watching some of Wylie Beckert's stuff from her video series. Ultimately I do not know that I want to use her full work process but it's helpful to see how some people render.

    One of the many "holes" in my craft in my opinion is that I don't have a strong sense of composition, which feels like it also kind of stems from my focus on portrait sculpting, I think. Figuring out what's interesting to look at is so different in some ways when shifting gears from 2d to 3d. My friend Ali suggested doing some movie still studies to get some good ideas for framing and lighting in one, and I'm definitely going to try that soon.

  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited June 7
    oh hey so whoops I've been away from this thread while I've been thinking about some stuff in a casual way.

    (my poor red oxide pencil when compared with the rest of my pencil set, oh dear.)

    I do have a pile of stuff I'm planning to scan in soon! some of it isn't red, even. >.<

    tapeslinger on
  • tapeslingertapeslinger Space Unicorn Slush Ranger Social Justice Rebel ScumRegistered User regular
    edited July 25
    HEH.

    Well, I got a bunch of book-publishing-related tasks to do roughly the week after my last post and have been very fixated on them, so I have still done no scanning or other things.

    I started a painting for funsies while I was bar-conning at the Nebulas conference in Pittsburgh, and then that turned into a large-scale illustration that will eventually be part of a series I think.

    Tracking the ongoing progress for that has been interesting (I have forced myself out of my strictly-regimented color palette one additional color at a time) between twitter and instagram and whatnot.

    The finished painting, more or less:


    I'm going to shoot some good RAW files with my partner's dslr and pull it into photoshop. I don't know how much I want to do with it in PS but I figure being able to really tune up color and so on will be good.

    I have a few more illustrations like this that I'd like to tackle so that I have a short series or a set. They're loosely based on the material in my book, but really only just enough so that I can stay motivated to finish the work and study harder on each piece before I 'finalize' stuff.

    The next piece in that series, the most recent study:


    I feel like I'm improving by leaps and bounds with these, purely by pushing myself to study and render things (and occasionally test things off-page if I'm concerned about them instead of just... never trying something) and I'm feeling a lot more comfortable in my style. I'm never going to be a hyper-focused hyper-realistic illustrator, but I've also realized that's not what I want for my work necessarily?

    I am still doing a lot of reading and studying on technique--picked up a sumi-e ink book I've wanted for a while and Lippincott's Fantasy Illustrator's Technique book, both of which have been good for me in terms of being a little more free with my materials and stuff, not worrying so much about perfectly rendering something.

    I am trying REALLY hard to let myself make more messes and just try stuff.

    I also bought myself a (cheap, tiny, but still useful) Huion tablet so that I can do more with photoshop (It's actually a pretty good tablet, and since I don't do amazingly at drawing directly on a screen, it actually works surprisingly well for me because I've still got muscle memory from years of using other cheap tablets)

    Onward!

    tapeslinger on
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